What to Know About Travel in Hurricane Harvey's Aftermath
Hurricane Harvey wreaked havoc in southeast Texas over the weekend, killing five people, wounding more than a dozen, and displacing tens of thousands from their homes.
The Category 4 storm made landfall Friday, dumping more than 20 inches of rain in parts of Texas and expected to total more than 50 inches by the time the storm is over at the end of the week, The New York Times reported. 300,000 people were left without power as of Monday, as many sought refuge in shelters.
Warm water in the Gulf of Mexico intensified the rainfall, while a storm surge elevated Galveston Bay, causing severe flooding, meteorologist Hal Needham, told NYT.
“A two- or three-foot storm surge alone would not have been catastrophic,” he said. “It was all these ingredients coming together.”
At least 3,000 flights were canceled over the weekend, as both Houston airports — Hobby and George Bush International Airport — closed Sunday, Fortune reported. They are expected to remain closed until at least Wednesday.
The airport closures will ripple farther than travelers flying in or out of Houston. The Texas city is a hub, particularly for United, and many connections will need to be rerouted, causing potential delays.
Harvey remains a tropical storm and is expected to return to the upper Texas coast in the next few days, bringing more rainfall and flooding, according to the Weather Channel.
Many airlines have extended their travel warning to airports in Austin and September, and are offering to reissue tickets for next week, usually waiving the change fee. Passengers can check the status of their flight and rebook if necessary via the following links:
Ground transportation in Houston, Galveston, and surrounding areas will continue to be extremely limited in the coming week, as flooding has closed most of the main freeways.